Machinists are employed by companies that manufacture or repair equipment. They may work in either job shops or production shops.
In job shops, they make a wide variety of replacement parts for many different types of machinery and industrial equipment. In production shops, they manufacture parts using mass production methods.
Experienced machinists may advance to positions such as inspector, foreman or superintendent or CNC programmer. Some machinists start businesses of their own. Alberta certified journeyperson machinists who have the supervisory or management skills required by industry may apply for an Achievement in Business Competencies Blue Seal by contacting Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training.
Machinists are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 7231: Machinists and machining and tooling inspectors. In Alberta, 78% of people employed in this classification work in the following industries:
The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:
- time of year (in some industries)
- trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
- location in Alberta
- employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
- occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
- size of the occupation.
Over 4,400 Albertans are employed in the Machinists and machining and tooling inspectors occupational group. This group is expected to have an-above-average annual growth of 1.8% from 2016 to 2020. As a result, 79 new positions are forecast to be created each year, in addition to job openings created by employment turnover. Note: As machinists form only a part of this larger occupational group, only some of these newly created positions will be for machinists.
Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.